As we enter the new year, most of us start considering lifestyle changes. As I’ve said, I’m not into New Year’s resolutions but I am into changing habits. See below for five lifestyle changes you can consider in 2023 – borrowed from my friend, Alice Smith. I have added a few “hot mess” tips – or should I say “anti-hot mess” tips to the list.
1 – Hydrate – We often mistake thirst for hunger. Half of your body weight in ounces of water daily is the ultimate goal! I always have my clients work up to that goal. Don’t be overwhelmed by that number. Start where you are and work up to it!
2 – Real, whole foods – Limit heavily processed foods. When looking at a food label – the fewer ingredients, the better! How can you make a swap from a heavily processed food to one with fewer ingredients?
3 – Cut back on sugar and ditch artificial sweeteners – Sugar is hiding EVERYWHERE. You may know it’s in your pastries, muffins, cookies, candy, and soda – but what about the sneaky sources of sugar lurking in things like salad dressings, pasta sauces, oatmeal, and granola bars? It adds up! Skip the “sugar-free” options, too. Sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners are sweeter than the real thing and actually make you crave more sugar and keep you from reaching your goals!
4 – Vegetables – Load up on veggies! Incorporate into your meals and snacks – it adds more food to your plate and more nutrition. Win-win!
5 – Sleep – Non-nutrition related but is SO important! Getting enough good quality sleep each night will help with blood sugar balance, weight management, and so much more!
6 – Time with the Lord – Practice a daily quiet time (even if it’s just 10 minutes) to enhance your relationship with God. We could all give up 10 minutes of scrolling on our phones for this purpose and it will add so much more value to our lives. Just being real, ya’ll!
7 – Work on your thoughts – Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t you are right.” Renew your mind and silence the voice inside you that says you can’t make changes. And don’t hesitate to ask for God’s help! With Him, all things are possible.
8 – Care for your soul – We spend a lot more of our time and energy caring for our bodies than our souls. Create a self-care plan with activities you will do to refuel your tank, such as taking a walk in nature, deep breathing, massage, or reading.
Obviously, you can’t make massive changes all at once. Start with one thing and build over time. It’s helpful to create a plan with small goals (make them SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound). Post it and make a living document, crossing off things you achieve consistently and adding more goals over time. Here’s my first one as an example –
Reduce alcohol intake by cutting out a glass of wine Sunday through Thursday nights, starting 1/1 and ongoing (measured by compliance)
This is an updated post originally published on Leslie Speas
CONFESSIONS OF A HOT MESS
—From Mess to MESSage
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